“What is the meaning of life?”What is the meaning of life? How can purpose, fulfillment, and satisfaction in life be found? How can something of lasting significance be achieved? So many people have never stopped to consider these important questions. They look back years later and wonder why their relationships have fallen apart and why they feel so empty, even though they may have achieved what they set out to accomplish. An athlete who had reached the pinnacle of his sport was once asked what he wished someone would have told him when he first started playing his sport. He replied, “I wish that someone would have told me that when you reach the top, there’s nothing there.” Many goals reveal their emptiness only after years have been wasted in their pursuit.In our humanistic culture, people pursue many things, thinking that in them they will find meaning. Some of these pursuits include business success, wealth, good relationships, sex, entertainment, and doing good to others. People have testified that while they achieved their goals of wealth, relationships, and pleasure, there was still a deep void inside, a feeling of emptiness that nothing seemed to fill.The author of the biblical book of Ecclesiastes describes this feeling when he says
“Meaningless! Meaningless! …Utterly meaningless! Everything is meaningless”. King Solomon, the writer of Ecclesiastes, had wealth beyond measure, wisdom beyond any man of his time or ours, hundreds of women, palaces and gardens that were the envy of kingdoms, the best food and wine, and every form of entertainment available.
He said at one point that anything his heart wanted, he pursued. And yet he summed up “life under the sun”—life lived as though all there is to life is what we can see with our eyes and experience with our senses—is meaningless.
Why is there such a void? Because God created us for something beyond what we can experience in the here-and-now.
Solomon said of God,
“Yet God has made everything beautiful for its own time. He has planted eternity in the human heart, but even so, people cannot see the whole scope of God’s work from beginning to end”
In our hearts we are aware that the “here-and-now” is not all that there is.In Genesis, the first book of the Bible, we find that God created mankind in His image
Then God said, “Let us make human beings in our image, to be like us.”
This means that we are more like God than we are like anything else (any other life form). We also find that before mankind fell into sin and the curse of sin came upon the earth, the following things were true:
God made man a social creature
Genesis 2:18, 21-24 Then the Lord God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper who is just right for him.”…….. So the Lord God caused the man to fall into a deep sleep. While the man slept, the Lord God took out one of the man’s ribs and closed up the opening. Then the Lord God made a woman from the rib, and he brought her to the man. “At last!” the man exclaimed.“This one is bone from my bone,and flesh from my flesh!She will be called ‘woman,’ because she was taken from ‘man.’”This explains why a man leaves his father and mother and is joined to his wife, and the two are united into one.
God gave man work
The Lord God placed the man in the Garden of Eden to tend and watch over it.
God had fellowship with man
When the cool evening breezes were blowing, the man and his wife heard the Lord God walking about in the garden. So they hid from the Lord God among the trees.
God gave man dominion over the earth
They will reign over the fish in the sea, the birds in the sky, the livestock, all the wild animals on the earth, and the small animals that scurry along the ground.”
What is the significance of these things? God intended for each of these to add to our fulfillment in life, but all of these (especially man’s fellowship with God) were adversely affected by man’s fall into sin and the resulting curse upon the earth (Genesis 3).In Revelation, the last book of the Bible, God reveals that He will destroy this present earth and heavens and usher in the eternal state by creating a new heaven and a new earth.
At that time, He will restore full fellowship with redeemed mankind, while the unredeemed will have been judged unworthy and cast into the lake of fire
And I saw a great white throne and the one sitting on it. The earth and sky fled from his presence, but they found no place to hide. I saw the dead, both great and small, standing before God’s throne. And the books were opened, including the Book of Life. And the dead were judged according to what they had done, as recorded in the books. The sea gave up its dead, and death and the grave gave up their dead. And all were judged according to their deeds.Then death and the grave were thrown into the lake of fire. This lake of fire is the second death. And anyone whose name was not found recorded in the Book of Life was thrown into the lake of fire.
The curse of sin will be done away with; there will be no more sin, sorrow, sickness, death, or pain
He will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain. All these things are gone forever.
”God will dwell with them, and they shall be His sons
All who are victorious will inherit all these blessings, and I will be their God, and they will be my children.
Thus, we come full circle:
God created us to have fellowship with Him,
Man sinned, breaking that fellowshipGod restores that fellowship fully in the eternal state.
To go through life achieving everything only to die separated from God for eternity would be worse than futile!
But God has made a way to not only make eternal bliss possible but also life on earth satisfying and meaningful.
And Jesus replied, “I assure you, today you will be with me in paradise.”
How is this eternal bliss and “heaven on earth” obtained?Meaning of life restored through Jesus ChristReal meaning in life, both now and in eternity, is found
In the restoration of the relationship with God that was lost with Adam and Eve’s fall into sin.
That relationship with God is only possible through His Son, Jesus Christ
There is salvation in no one else! God has given no other name under heaven by which we must be saved.”
But to all who believed him and accepted him, he gave the right to become children of God.
Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me.
Eternal life is gained when we repent of our sin (no longer want to continue in it) and Christ changes us, making of us new creations, and we rely on Jesus Christ as Savior.Real meaning in life is not found only in accepting Jesus as Savior, as wonderful as that is.
The real meaning in life is when one:
If you are not a Christian (or perhaps a new believer), you might be saying to yourself, “That does not sound very exciting or fulfilling to me!” But Jesus made the following statements:Matthew 11:28-30 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light”.
(John 10:10b) “I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full”.
Matthew 16:24-25“If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me will find it”.
Psalm 37:4“Delight yourself in the LORD and he will give you the desires of your heart”.What all of these verses are saying is that we have a choice. We can continue to seek to guide our own lives, which results in emptiness, or we can choose to pursue God and His will for our lives with a whole heart, which will result in living life to the full, having the desires of our hearts met, and finding contentment and satisfaction. This is so because our Creator loves us and desires the best for us (not necessarily the easiest life, but the most fulfilling).The Christian life can be compared to the choice of whether to purchase the expensive seats at a sporting event that are close to the action, or pay less and watch the game from a distance. Watching God work “from the front row” is what we should choose but, sadly, is not what most people choose. Watching God work firsthand is for whole-hearted disciples of Christ who have truly stopped pursuing their own desires to pursue instead God’s purposes. They have paid the price (complete surrender to Christ and His will); they are experiencing life to its fullest; and they can face themselves, their fellow man, and their Maker with no regrets. Have you paid the price? Are you willing to? If so, you will not hunger after meaning or purpose again.